Union Berlin’s Nigerian striker Anthony Ujah said he is “proud” of Jadon Sancho and other Bundesliga players who staged on-pitch protests following the death of black American George Floyd and pledged to do the same if he scores against Schalke this Sunday.
“I am proud of the players who are taking a stand. I am proud of Jadon Sancho. I am proud of Weston McKennie. I am proud of Marcus Thuram. I am proud of Achraf Hakimi. The whole world saw their message,” wrote Ujah in an article for German daily FAZ.
After scoring in Dortmund’s win at Paderborn on Sunday, England winger Sancho lifted his shirt to reveal the message “Justice for George Floyd”. He was booked, but for lifting his shirt over his head rather than for the message.
His Dortmund team-mate Hakimi unveiled a similar t-shirt, while Schalke’s McKennie wrote the same message on his captain’s armband during a defeat to Werder Bremen. Gladbach striker Thuram, meanwhile, dropped to one knee after scoring against Union.
The German Football Association (DFB) later decided not to sanction the four players for what they said were “symbols of solidarity”.
“This line will also be taken should further players make demonstrations on racism and the death of Floyd throughout upcoming matchdays,” the DFB added.
Ujah, who staged a similar protest while playing for Cologne six years ago following the death of another black American man Eric Garner, said he would not hesitate to do so again.
“Six years later, we are again talking about the same thing. A black person is no longer able to breathe and loses his life under police violence. That is a disgrace. Every year we hope that it will improve, but the same things happen again,” said the Nigerian.